Rules of the Webcomic List Awards

1. Chairperson
1.1 Members of The Webcomic List forum (“the Forum”) will appoint a Chairperson to organise the Committee and the Webcomic List Awards (“the Awards”) as a whole. The Chairperson is the final arbiter for the rules of the Awards. Although the Chairperson will generally make decisions based on the rules, they are free to depart from them if felt necessary having taken into account all the circumstances.

2. Committee
2.1 The Chairperson will appoint a Committee to assist in running the Awards. The majority of the Committee will generally consist of members of the Forum but Committee members may be sourced from outside the Forum at the Chairperson’s discretion.

2.2 The Chairperson may delegate responsibility for any matter regarding, or area of, the Awards to any member of the Committee. Any reference to ‘Chairperson’ in the following rules may also refer to such an appointed Delegate.

2.3 The Committee are expected to discuss matters pertaining to the running of the Awards. Such issues may be raised by the Chairperson, or any member of the Committee. Decision-making will be on a consensus basis with all Committee members being eligible to vote. In the event of a tie, the Chairperson is the final decision-maker on what constitutes a Committee consensus or decision.

2.4 The Chairperson may remove members from the Committee for any reason (inactivity being the most likely).

3. Categories
3.1 The categories in which awards are to be awarded is decided by the committee, possibly in consultation with the forum at large. Definition of such categories (or the choice not to define) is also decided by the committee.

3.2 The committee/chairperson may elect to discontinue proceeding with any award category at any point or to otherwise change or merge categories.

4. Nominations
4.1 The Awards are opened up to nominations from the webcomic Community (“the Community”). The Community is defined as persons who can demonstrate a substantive involvement in webcomics or comics in general in the year preceding the awards may nominate comics. Although this definition mostly covers webcomic creators, the Community is not limited to creators.

4.2 Each Nominator may nominate up to three webcomics for each category of the Awards. The definition of “webcomic” is based on the criteria for each category of the awards and will be decided by the Jury for that category on a consensus basis.. The Jury may exclude a comic if it is felt it does not match the criteria for the category they are adjudicating.

5. Disqualification and Exclusion Criteria
5.1 Comics that the Chairperson or any Committee members are involved in are excluded from the Awards.

5.2 Self-nomination is not permitted. Any and all self-nominations will be discounted when nominations are tallied. The nomination count is not an automated process and any self-nomination will be visible to those members of the Committee assigned to the task of tallying votes.

5.3 Any attempt to cheat, including but not limited to submitting multiple nomination forms or nominating using a false identity (or the identity of another individual) will result in disqualification in that year’s awards. Disqualification covers both disqualification as a nominee and as someone qualified to nominate. The duration of the disqualification may be extended by decision of the Committee or Chairperson.

5.4 Attempting to entice others into nominating, or not nominating, a specified comic (be it one you are involved in or otherwise) through ‘vote swapping’ or other reciprocal agreements is a violation of the rules and may result in disqualification.

5.5 These rules do not necessarily cover all potential actions that could be considered unfair or unsporting. The Committee has the right to penalise or disqualify any person who is determined to have acted in a fashion they believe is contrary to the spirit of the Awards.

6. Finalists and Juries
6.1 The Finalists for each category are the four comics which received the most nominations in that category. In the event that two or more comics have received the same number of votes, the number of Finalists may be extended to five comics; or more at the discretion of the Chairperson. If less than four comics receive a significant number of nominations, the Finalists may be limited to those comics.

6.2 What constitutes a “significant” number of nominations is at the discretion of the Chairperson having taken into account all the circumstances.

6.3 Any other complications that arise from determining the finalists from the nominations shall be determined by the Chairperson and Committee on a case-by-case basis.

6.4 A Winner shall be chosen in each category by a Jury. The Jury for each category is appointed by the Committee.

6.5 The Chairperson and Committee members may sit on Juries. People may sit on more than one Jury. Jury members may not be involved in the comics that are Finalists in any category.

6.6 The Jury are invited to discuss the Finalists and debate their merits. They are expected to consider all nominees equally.

6.7 Unless a consensus is reached, the Jury will decide upon the winner by each Jurist ranking the Finalists in order of preference. Points will then be given to the Finalists in the order of: least favourite receiving 1 point; the next receiving 2 points; and so on up to the favourite.

6.8 If a Jury member only ranks a selection of the Finalists, the the above scoring system still applies, with the unranked Finalists receiving zero points from that Jurist. If the Jurist picks only 1 Finalist, that Finalist is awarded 1 point, with other Finalists receiving zero.

6.9 The winner in each category using the points-based system will be the Finalist with the most points once all Jury members have voted; or once a period of time determined by the Chairperson has passed in the event that not all Jurists decide to vote. In the event of a tie, Preferential Voting will be used employed as a tie-breaker.

6.10 In the event of an absolute dead heat, the award for that category may be shared.

6.11 Finalists will be notified upon making the shortlist for any award category.

6.12 Finalists have the right to withdraw their comics from the Awards if they desire.

7. Communication and Use of Images
7.1 Finalists must not try to directly communicate with Jury members in order to attempt to influence their decisions.

7.2 Finalists have the right to request a particular image be used in the award ceremony to illustrate their comic. Finalists have the right to deny the use of images from their comic to illustrate the award ceremony at any time.

7.3 Although the Committee will work to accommodate a Finalist’s wishes, if a Finalist wishes to: withdraw their comic; suggest an image for illustration; or deny use of an image for illustration, they should attempt notify the Committee within 14 days of the announcement of the shortlist to allow time to make the required adjustment.